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Friday, March 14, 2008

Grip Adjustment...

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Susan fromLearning for Lifetime

"Grip Adjustment"

If you were standing in the line of a thrill ride at Epcot in April of 1999, you may have seen the amazing grip of my then five-year-old son. The car ride simulates a series of road and safety tests. Just before entering, you watch a video that recounts each test. The final “test” highlighted is the crash test. My son started to fret immediately. My husband and two older sons had chosen to go into a “single rider line” which means you can board quicker than parties that want to stay together.

I reassured my boy that we’d be together the whole time. He tightened his grip on the railing. The older boys and their Father boarded their car leaving the younger boy and I for the next car. Suddenly, my son started wailing louder than I had ever heard.

He fixed his grip on that rail and I began my quest to pry him off of it! While he screamed at glass-breaking decibels, I pried those fingers and explained that he WOULD get on the ride no matter what. It was a matter of principle.

I remember looking at the loaded cars in front of us and seeing the remainder of my family staring back at us like we were total strangers. My son quieted down to a whimper when I finally strapped him in to the car’s seat and held his hand tight for the ride.

By the time the three minute ride passed, the screams had turned to sheer joy. His favorite part circling the outside of the building at high speeds. At the end, my co-driver grinned and said, “Let’s do that again!”

While studying the life of Moses in church this past week, I was reminded of this whole Epcot episode. He took the Jewish people on quite an adventure as they exited Egypt.

After all the plagues and hardships, Pharaoh let Moses take his people out of the land but later changed his mind. In Exodus 15, Moses and the people of God find themselves at the bank of the Red Sea with Egyptian soldiers marching after them in hot pursuit. It is here that the people in “Moses’ queue line” tighten their grip. Terrified they cry out to the Lord and ask Moses:

"Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert
to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? 12 Didn't we say
to you in Egypt, 'Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians'? It would have
been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!" (Exodus 15:11-12)
While holding on tight, they announce (maybe even screamed) to their leader that they would rather turn back into slavery than to face the ride they were about to take. They were filled to the brim with anxiety and worry. And they were convinced this was not a good idea.

Moses slowly begins to loosen their grip, however as he tells them:

13 "Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will
bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. 14 The
LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still." (Exodus 15:13 - 14)

Then, with God’s help, the Red Sea parts and these terrified people walk through on dry ground!
While I don’t think they got to the other side, as my son did, and announce, “Let’s do THAT again!” I do know that they reached the other side and sang praises for God’s protection. But it required letting go.

We must trust God to lead us, by placing our hand firmly in His and holding tight, rather than gripping our own circumstances (or railing). When we really let go and step into the journey He has placed before us I am convinced that can all reach the other side grinning from ear to ear!

In His Grip of Grace,

:-) Susan

I invite you to come visit my personal blog at Learning for Lifetime


Blogger Linda said...

Susan, I love this application. I relate to the people's fear, and constantly have to remind myself not to long for Egypt. And yes, even though the Israelites probably didn't say "Let's do that again," there are some people who have gone through extremely difficult trials and have come out on the other side of that pain to say, "It was worth it all. I wouldn't trade what happened to me as a result of that trial." That always amazes me. Thanks for this wonder post.

March 14, 2008 at 6:35 AM  
Blogger Mocha with Linda said...

How many times the very thing I dread turns into a wonderful experience. When will I ever learn to trust God, knowing He only wants my good.

Thanks for the encouragement.

March 14, 2008 at 9:13 AM  
Blogger Melli said...

I LOVE the way God makes you see things! And I'm sO glad to see you sharing your thoughts over here!

I know I've had my share fears, where I really needed to loosen my grip, and grab hold of the Father's hand... I wish it was instinct... but sadly I'm still working on that!


March 14, 2008 at 9:19 AM  
Blogger LadyBugCrossing said...

Wow - excellently said!
Wanna be our new pastor??

March 14, 2008 at 1:13 PM  
Blogger windycindy said...

I am definitely a "gripper!" It is not easy for me to "Let Go and Let God!" I enjoyed your reading. Thanks for sharing your inspiration......

March 14, 2008 at 1:31 PM  
Blogger Darlene said...

That was awesome. They must have been terrified, but they trusted God and walked through. I'd be running through, that's forsure. :)

Thanks for the great devotional!

March 14, 2008 at 1:41 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

Awesome devotion, thank you.

March 14, 2008 at 4:03 PM  
Anonymous Danielle Says Hello said...

Congratulations on your 'guest' post. Well done!!!!!!!!!!!

March 15, 2008 at 9:42 AM  
Blogger The Preacher's Wife said...

I can't count the times I've settled for backbreaking labor and prisoner's food all because I refused to give up control. Loved this application, Susan. :)


March 16, 2008 at 8:54 AM  

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